Monday, November 28, 2011


Suffering stinks.

I want to use other words, but am refraining from doing so.

My husband who turns 37 today encouraged me to write this.

Poor guy, on his birthday, we are eating lunch together and the heaviness on my heart is spilling all over the table into the awful tasting Thai food we ordered.  Seriously, I have never tasted such bad food.  And we LOVE Thai food.  It stunk.  Again, more words here that I am leaving out.

Anyway, I heard the news this morning of the unexpected death of a Trinity student (that's the fourth in about three years).  He belongs to a large family and I know his mom, the sweetest person.

I'm in the car just crying and feeling so sad for his family. For us, the Trinity family.

Deeper though, I am mourning the awful reality of another kind of suffering in another situation. Pain brought on by human choice, not by some accident or natural consequence.  It hurts too.

The contrast is...well, I don't know how to describe it yet, but the contrast is there. And, it is hard to be a part of.

Recently, I have been working with our daughter preparing her for the Sacrament of First Reconciliation. One evening, I was helping lead a group of 4th graders in an activity for them to better understand the reality of their bad choices and its effects on their relationships.  The African tale "The Festival Fabric" shows how our decisions to sin really actually affect those around us.  Our lives are interwoven, not just connected.  It's not some nebulous, cosmic or spiritual thing out there we sometimes refer to as the "Body of Christ"...its actual real human relationships that are broken down and in some cases totally destroyed when we choose to sin.  It just happens.  Whether we know it or not, like it or not, acknowledge it or not. It just does.  The tale itself is kinder in its approach to relay that message. I'm just tired of skirting around the issue or the language.  We can handle it.  There is real pain and suffering when one person chooses a horribly wrong behavior.

There is real healing that I trust will be a part of the days, weeks, and years ahead for this grieving family who lost their son last night.  The body of Christ in the form of other family members, students, faculty, friends, co-workers, the members of Nativity parish....all will support and strengthen this family who suffers much.  It is just what we do. 

There is tragedy too though when in such an unnatural way, brokenness and pain come into our lives due to the hurt caused by a person. 

I intuitively know there can be healing there too.  But have yet to see it in real form.  I think its the wait that leads to more hurt and pain.  But that's what real patience is, I'm told.  Walking alongside someone and helping bear their burdens.  Brought on by themselves or not.  Ick.  (Really refraining here.)

Life is hard.

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